A Belgian researcher has discovered a weakness in WPA-2, the security protocol used in the majority of routers and devices including computers, mobile phones and connected household appliances, to secure internet and wireless network connections.
The researcher, Mathy Vanhoef, has named the flaw KRACK, for Key Reinstallation Attack.
Any device that supports Wi-Fi is likely to be affected by KRACK, albeit devices will have different levels of vulnerability depending on their operating systems. Linux and Android are believed to be more susceptible than Windows and iOS, and devices running Android 6.0 are reportedly particularly vulnerable.
By Cameron Abbott and Rebecca Murray
Last month we reported that three of Australia’s largest banks had collectively launched an application to the ACCC seeking permission to negotiate with Apple Inc. to install their own electronic payment applications on iPhones.
Apple has submitted a scathing response to the ACCC, warning that allowing the banks to negotiate will compromise the iPhone handset’s security, reduce innovation and blunt Apple’s entry into the payments market in Australia. Read Apple’s submission to the ACCC here.
Apple expressed particular concern about security risks, claiming that providing simple access to NFC antenna by banking applications would fundamentally diminish the high level of security of Apple devices. This concern is not unwarranted as it was recently revealed that hackers have found ways to intercept contactless mobile payments in Samsung’s latest Galaxy smartphones. While Samsung refuted this in a recent blog post, an attached Samsung FAQ revealed that it is possible for an attacker to skim a smartphone’s payment token and make fraudulent purchases.